Van Vogt Award Created

A. E. Van Vogt

The Winnipeg Science Fiction Association has created the A. E. Van Vogt Award to spotlight the best Canadian science fiction in past years. The club wants the award to (1) draw attention to Canadian Science Fiction, (2) demonstrate that Canada has been producing World class writers for some time, (3), cause more people to talk about Science Fiction, (4) promote better writing and (5) help discover more writers.

Van Vogt was born a century ago in Canada. While living in Winnipeg, he launched his pro sf career with the short story “Black Destroyer,” published in Astounding in 1939. There he also wrote the iconic “Slan.” He relocated from Winnipeg to Hollywood in 1944.

His career honors include SFWA’s Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award (1995) – the only Canadian-born recipient to date. It’s an ironic coincidence that the award’s namesake once panned Van Vogt’s novel The World of Null-A in a critical essay, and a testament to the power of his writing that Philip K. Dick came to his defense —

Damon feels that it’s bad artistry when you build those funky universes where people fall through the floor. It’s like he’s viewing a story the way a building inspector would when he’s building your house. But reality really is a mess, and yet it’s exciting. The basic thing is, how frightened are you of chaos? And how happy are you with order? Van Vogt influenced me so much because he made me appreciate a mysterious chaotic quality in the universe which is not to be feared.

The Winnipeg Science Fiction Association is creating the award with the permission of Van Vogt’s family. The award will consist of a presentation piece and monetary prize. It will be given for the first time in September 2012.

The full press release follows the jump.

[Thanks to John Mansfield for the story.]

Subject: Award

WINNIPEG SCIENCE FICTION ASSOCIATION Inc
114 BROWNING, Winnipeg, MB, R3K 0L8

Pghmb (at) shaw (dot) ca

Postal queries to: 114 Browning, Winnipeg, MB, R3K 0L8

For IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday APR 26 2012

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada – The Winnipeg Science Fiction Association Inc (WINSFA) is delighted to announce the creation of the A.E. VAN VOGT Award (The A.E.V.V.A.).

Exactly 100 years ago, on April 26, 1912, Alfred Elton Van Vogt was born on a farm in Edenburg, a Russian Mennonite community east of Gretna, Manitoba, Canada. By July 1939, he had written his first Science Fiction story and had it professionally published.. He continued to write in Winnipeg until 1944 and it was during this time that one of his major stories “SLAN” was written. By 1995 he was awarded the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award by the Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA) . He has been the ONLY Canadian Science Fiction Writer to be awarded this major title.

The Winnipeg Science Fiction Association (WINSFA) has taken advantage of this moment in time to create an award to honor this Manitoba born writer and his unique position as Canada’s only Grand Master and we extend our sincere gratitude to Van Vogt’s family for granting permission to honor his name & works.

This award will be called the A.E.Van Vogt Award or AEVVA.

We believe that this award, based on spotlighting the best in Canadian Science Fiction Writing over the past years, will:

Draw attention to Canadian Science Fiction

Demonstrate that Canada has been producing World class writers for some time.

Cause more people to talk about Science Fiction.

Promote better writing.

Discover more writers.

The actual award will consist of a presentation piece and monetary prize.

We will host the award ceremony here in Winnipeg in late Sept to continue our support of Canadian Science Fiction.

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